Book Events & Blog Events, Challenges

NaNoWriMo & Questions for YOU

Hello, everyone!  I wanted to write a little post, letting you guys know what I’m doing next month.  These past couple of months have been hectic for me, and November will be more of the same.  But if you like to write, it would be awesome if you would join me in my hectic month of November!

Now, I’m fairly new to book blogging (actually, I think I just passed the 9-month mark yesterday!), so I’m not sure how familiar you all are with a little thing called NaNoWriMo.  So if you already know about it, you can skip this next part, but be sure to read on below, because I’ve got questions for everyone further down the post!

So, for those of you not familiar with NaNoWriMo, allow me to inform you! NaNoWriMo, short for National Novel Writing Month, is an event where thousands of writers each try to write a 50,000-word novel in the month of November.  Sounds crazy, right?  Well, it’s actually doable!  I’ve participated for 3 years now and although I’ve only reached that 50,000-word goal one of those times, it’s still a fun event that I look forward to every year.

Not only is NaNoWriMo a fun challenge for writers, but it’s a fun social event as well.  I met some of my closest friends through meetups in my area.  And the website ( has forums and pep talks and all kinds of stuff to keep you motivated and organized and having fun the whole month long.

So you’re probably wondering what you get out of it.  Well, basically, you end up with the immense satisfaction of writing for a month.  Whether you reach that 50,000-word goal or not, you’ve written something that didn’t exist before that month began.  It won’t be perfect–actually the goal of NaNoWriMo is quantity, not quality.  You get the ideas and the basic story down on paper and then, if you want to, you can edit it later for possible publication or just for your self.

Still not sold on the idea?  Well, take a look at the following novels.  What do you think they all have in common?

They’re all NaNo novels!  At some point, each of these authors was writing their novel during NaNo!  And they’re all pretty successful novels, as well.

Anyway, if you’d like to know more about NaNo, you can go to their About page, or you can feel free to ask me questions in the comments.  If you love to write and you’ve always thought about writing a novel, why not try it out?

Questions for YOU

Since I’m doing NaNoWriMo this year and I have all you lovely bloggers and readers hanging around the internets, I’d like to ask you a few questions about what YOU want to see in books that you read.  I’m not asking for you to tell me what trend you want to see, or what plot you want to see in a book.  I want to know what you like and don’t like about the books you read.

So please, tell me, what irks you about the books you’ve been reading lately? Maybe you’re tired of insta-love, or you hate the fact that there aren’t many complex friendships between female characters, or that all the parents in YA novels are completely absent, etc. And what do you love about the books you’ve been reading?  Maybe the rise of strong female characters that don’t literally kick butt?  

I want to know your thoughts because I don’t want to fall into the trap of writing these things that are annoying myself and all my fellow readers. NaNoWriMo is by no means simply a way to get published.  But I’ve wanted to be an author since I was a little kid, and when I write, I write with the focus of possibly sending the book out to agents at some point.  Not every book will get to that point, and actually none have for me yet.  And I’m not writing a book simply to get published, nor am I asking you these questions because I’m “writing for the audience.”  I’ll still very much be writing for me, but I want to avoid those cliches that many readers despise.  So thanks in advance for all your advice!  And I hope to see you writing alongside me in November!


  1. Kate Midnight Book Girl

    October 15, 2012 at 8:57 pm

    I personally am so sick of the "bad boy" love interest. He can be rude, violent, abusive, but as long as he's hot it's okay! I especially hate to see it in YA books, because danggit, nice guys can be attractive too! Also, when it comes to YA in particular, I am tired of being told, rather than being shown, a characters personality. As in, she's so selfless and non-violent because she's a member of Amnesty International, or he's so charming because I say he smiles charmingly, or she's so sarcastic because she says things sarcastically, or he must be a bad boy because he dresses ALL IN BLACK! Also, I am tired of the token minority being added to the novel and then being written as a complete stereo-type: the smart Asian, the homosexual bff who dresses well, the fat friend who's always on a diet. I love seeing diverse characters, but lets make them more… realistic? People are complicated in real life, and books who feature characters with layers are always going to be my favorite.

  2. Kimberly @ On the Wings of Books

    October 16, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    Things I don't like – aliens ;)
    Other things I don't like – books that are portrayed as realistic contemporary and are not. I don't know how else to explain this except to say that if the book is marketed as "real" it better be "real" and most of the time it's really just a regular contemporary. Sorry if that makes no sense. I mostly agree with Kate on the stereotypical characters, but at the same time stereotypes are stereotypes for a reason, so I get it, but it would be nice to see a bigger variety of characters.

    Absent parents in YA is a problem, but it only seems to bother me in contemporary YA. Not really sure why.

    I like lots of things in books (including it seems, robots/cyborgs/androids) so I'm pretty varied on what I read.

    I hope you have a good time and get lots of writing done! :)

  3. Bittner

    October 16, 2012 at 2:49 pm

    I hate absent parents in YA books but I also hate kids rebelling against their parents too much. I recently finished a book where the MC ran away from home and then spent the entire book blaming her parents for it, and the author was presenting it in a way where she was saying the MC was right to do what she did. And personally that is not a message I want presented to the younger generation. Your parents may suck ass but they are still your parents. Running away from home because your parents don't like your boyfriend and you were lying to your parents for months and now your pissed because you got caught – that's dumb!
    It is especially frustrating when you then read novels by authors like John Green who have amazing parents through out all of his books.
    Aside from YA, I have an author in chick lit that I love and that I am completely obsessed with, and each one of her books starts out with an outlandishly crazy and absurd plot that you have to swallow and extend your belief for in order to enjoy the rest of the story. And that does bother me. It doesn't make sense that a guy would pay his EX-wife $10,000 a MONTH to go take care of his abandoned niece and nephew out in the country. But that was a really good book though.

  4. fakesteph

    October 19, 2012 at 2:34 am

    I don't like clear cut battles between good and evil. I like heros to struggle with doing the write thing, and evil characters to come across as nice and sympathetic.

    Also, add me:

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